Kyle Gibson racking up wins and providing spiritual leadership for AL-leading Orioles

After picking up the 100th win of his 11-year MLB career Saturday, Baltimore Orioles pitcher Kyle Gibson joked with his teammates that he was just glad he reached 100 wins before he got to 100 losses. His career record now stands at 100-97.

Gibson allowed three runs and struck out nine batters in seven innings as Baltimore beat the New York Mets, 7-3.

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“You get a chance to look back and realize it’s been a long road to get here … 100 wins has a lot to do with the teams I’ve been around and the offense doing their job and giving me leeway to go out there and work like they did tonight,” Gibson said after the game.

The 35-year-old has been a great addition to a team that now owns the best record in the American League (70-42) and is the surprising leader of the AL East. Gibson signed a one-year deal in the offseason and now leads Baltimore in wins (11), innings pitched (140.0) and strikeouts (117). His 24 starts are tied for the MLB lead through Monday’s games.

As he nears matching a career-high 13 wins in a season, Gibson is also providing spiritual leadership for a young Orioles team. His faith in God has been a foundational part of his career.

When he was a freshman in high school, Gibson threw 120 pitches in a game and fractured a growth plate in his elbow. The injury sidelined him for the summer, forcing him to put his focus and energy somewhere else.

He joined a youth group, went on a mission trip and developed a personal relationship with the Lord.

“I had the time of my life,” Gibson told the Philadelphia Inquirer last year when he was with the Phillies. “That was the summer I gave my life to Christ. I know baseball’s going to be here and gone, and it might be gone sooner than later. If I wanted something stable in my life, it had to be something other than baseball.”

Gibson has continued to serve in various ways throughout his career, including with Big League Impact, the organization founded by St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright.

When the Orioles acquired Wainwright’s teammate and fellow believer Jack Flaherty at the trade deadline to bolster their rotation, Gibson and Wainwright had a conversation about what Baltimore was getting in Flaherty.

“For one he is a guy that was really liked in St. Louis,” Gibson said of his new teammate. “Get a text from Wainwright just about the kind of person he is. We’re excited to have him. When you can bring in a veteran starter that has that kind of track record of getting deep into games and having swing-and-miss stuff [it’s great]. Being a guy that has playoff experience and has pitched at the highest level of the game. I think he can bring a lot. He’s still really young.”

In May 2022, Gibson joined Sports Spectrum’s “Get in the Game” podcast to discuss his work with Big League impact and his walk with Christ. The 2021 All-Star expressed his gratitude for the journey God has led him on.

“God’s timing is perfect, and the path that He’s had me on has been an incredible one,” Gibson said on the podcast. “I wouldn’t go back and change it for anything, so just glad to be here now and getting this chance.”

As the Orioles move closer and closer to clinching their first playoff appearance since 2016, they will rely on the postseason experience of both Gibson and Flaherty. Gibson made two appearances during the Philadelphia Phillies’ run to the World Series last season, and Flaherty has four career playoff starts.

Though Gibson has battled injuries and struggled on the mound at points in his career, he kept trusting the plan God had for him.

“I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, and our story, thankfully, it’s a part of a bigger story, right?” he said on the podcast. “It’s a part of God’s story of all of humanity and everything that goes on. I believe that my story is being written every single day. I’m given struggles, I’m given triumphs for many different reasons.”

Baltimore begins a three-game series with the reigning World Series-champion Houston Astros at 7:05 p.m. ET Tuesday.

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